THE CITY OF TUBAS
By Heba Hrimat
Tubas is a Palestinian city a few kilometers to the west of the Jordan River. Its history dates back to the Canaanite era, that`s when it was originally named ‘Tuba Syoys’ which translates ‘shining star’. Tubas is also mentioned in the Book of Judges (Chapter 9) in the Old Testament under the name ‘Thebez’, when the ruler of Shechem at that time King ‘Abimelech‘ fled from Shechem after destroying it and killed its citizens.
The total population of Tubas currently reaches approximately 25,000 people, however the Christians of this region do not exceed 50 people, although their number has reached at one point up to 400 people. According to some of the Christians who still live in Tubas the main reason behind the decline in the number of Christians in the city could be due to the lack of employment opportunities, which forced people to move to neighboring cities or to migrate completely from Palestine to countries with potentially better education and job opportunities such as Canada, The U.S.A and Germany.
This small Orthodox Christian community owns an Orthodox Church named after the Holy Trinity, in the northern part of the city, which was built in 1976.
The outer construction does not suggest the building is a Church, and the interior decoration is very humble. The two-floor building also includes a parish hall where the Congregation gathers after the Divine Liturgy on Fridays. The Jerusalem Patriarchate has assigned Father Tou‘ma Dauod to serve in the Orthodox Christian Community in al-Zababidah.